Global Chat: Being thankful in MMOs


Last month’s Thanksgiving holiday in the US prompted several MMO bloggers to share their thanks for gaming and other geeky goodness. Stars of the Spiral had an entire list of thanksgiving, including a shoutout to CMs: “I give thanks to the community managers of Pirate101 and Wizard101 as well as #JuliaFromKI. Without them, the KingsIsle community would not be the same.”

Braxwolf is thankful for the discovery of personal creation: “Writing blog posts, producing podcasts, dabbling in video, designing wordpress pages, even organizing communities…these are all things that have tapped into a deep-seeded desire that I didn’t even realize was there. I prefer creating content to actually playing the games!”

Belghast shared a desire to be more thankful on a regular basis: “I should have more childlike joy about the things I am doing, rather talking about how this or that is a portent of a big coming failure.  I am tired of seeing the bad in my hobby, and I am tired of feeling like everything is going to s**t… and quickly.”

Ravalation: Friendship France gathering in LOTRO

Lord of the Rings Online popped up several times in my blog feed recently, so let’s indulge ourselves in a splurge of posts, shall we? Our first one is an on-the-scene report by Ravalation covering the community concert put on in honor of the terrorist attacks in Paris.

“It may sound strange to say this about a digital environment, but there was an amazing atmosphere,” she reported. “Everyone was respectful, solemn, but happy to be there. The bands had picked their songs themed for the occasion. One had even written their own song text.”

Level Up Haffle: Minas Tirith at last, impressions and questions

Haffle is finally at the gates of Minas Tirith and is generally excited and pleased at what he sees. However, this doesn’t stop him from asking one tough question.

“Why wasn’t there an expansion this time around, especially for something as big as Minas Tirith?” he wrote. “I certainly haven’t played through the update so I don’t know how much content was released, but surely there’s enough to fit an expansion, no? Was Turbine afraid that it wouldn’t sell? I kind of feel that this was a wasted last ditch opportunity to lure players back.”

The Ancient Gaming Noob: Mirkwood — As dank as the dankest of memes

Of course, if you’re not at the level cap, you might be able to empathize more with Wilhelm. He’s finally entered Mirkwood for the first time, six years after its initial release. His first impression? It’s dark. Really, really dark.

“Bilbo’s descriptions of the place in The Hobbit still stick with me, it being dark and oppressive and, well, dank,” he commented. “But this was some old-school, EverQuest with the gamma at default, running around at night dark. Even when things got a bit lighter, or I got near lit encampments, it was still pretty dark.”

West Karana: EQ Next Landmark still exists apparently

Are you wondering what the heck is going on with both EverQuest Next and Landmark? Brothers and sisters, you are not alone. Tipa went back to Landmark to touch base with that game and see if she could get a feel for the future of these games’ development.

Landmark is a very beautiful, if empty, game,” she observed. “But… it doesn’t feel like EverQuest at all. Not one bit. No moss snake has ever kicked someone to death in THIS world. And half elves are not 49.99999% elves now, they don’t even exist.”

GamingSF: Favourite MMO locales

We all have them: our favorite spots to hang out in MMOs. Telwyn shares 12 spots in various games that make him feel at home. Are any of these yours as well?

“The Deeprun Tram, running between Stormwind and Ironforge blew my mind when I first started playing World of Warcraft. It spoke of the grandeur and wonder of a deeply detailed virtual world. It also harks back to a time when travel was more onerous and more social than the modern era of flight almost everywhere all of the time,” he wrote.

Inventory Full: Waking a tiger

Bhagpuss gets riled up at the thought of developers and players rooting to bring back the older days of brutal MMO difficulty and deeper timesinks. He’s been there, done that, and he is so very glad that the industry has moved on.

“The idea that MMOs need to return to the levels of social interdependence that were the norm before Blizzard overturned the tables makes my blood run cold,” he rants. “The numerous pragmatic changes that a succession of developers has brought to the genre seem to me to have made both for better games and better entertainment. Somehow, though, complexity, nuance and, most especially, agency got tangled up with awkwardness, frustration and inaccessibility. Somewhere along the way a few babies got thrown out with a lot of dirty bathwater.”

Every day there are tons of terrific, insightful, and unusual articles posted across the MMO gaming blogosphere — and every day, Justin reads as many as he can. Global Chat is a sampling of noteworthy essays, rants, and guides from the past few weeks of MMO discourse.
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I love Belghast’s quote “I should have more childlike joy about the things I am doing…”.  That’s one of my core principles when I’m gaming.  This is my hobby, this is what I do to relax and HAVE FUN.  If a particular game starts having the fun drained out of it, whether through feature changes, unpleasant people, getting bored with it…..  Whatever, it’s time to move on.

This is the activity I choose to do when I’m NOT working, so above all I have to enjoy it.  I play a game until it stops delighting, or at least amusing me, then move on.  I’m thankful there are plenty of games that have core content that’s fun, and that there’s a site like Massively where I can have enjoyable conversations about them.